When Should You Call a Personal Injury Lawyer?

When Should You Call a Personal Injury Lawyer?

by / Wednesday, 05 October 2022 / Published in Personal Injury
A lawyer sits behind a desk with papers and a Lady Justice statue on it.

Accidents of any kind can have a wide range of impacts on a person’s life. In many cases, there may not be any long-term effects at all. A person might be able to get right back up again after a slip and fall with nothing more than a minor bruise or scrape and some mild achiness. A car accident might only cause property damage. Or if birth trauma results in a mild injury, it might be able to heal on its own without the need for surgery. 

Since not all accidents need the help of a lawyer, how do you know when you should call a personal injury lawyer for help? 

Insurance Companies are Involved

If you’ve been injured in an accident, your injuries may be covered by an insurance policy. In the case of a car accident, it may be your auto or personal health insurance. Or in the case of a slip and fall or dog bite, it could be covered by a homeowner’s insurance policy. Worker’s compensation is also a type of insurance. However, when insurance companies are involved in a case, it’s important to have a lawyer on your side who knows the law and can make sure you get all of the benefits you’re legally entitled to. 

Unfortunately, you can’t always count on insurers to have your best interests at heart – they have a vested interest in paying out as little money as possible. Very often, they’ll try to pay only for minimal care for immediate needs and try to cut corners on long-term care. They may try to argue that you were at fault for the accident so they shouldn’t have to pay at all. A lawyer will be able to help fight on your behalf in these situations. 

Your Injuries are Severe or Disabling

When injuries are severe, have long-lasting effects, or leave you permanently disabled, it’s extremely important to make sure that all of your long-term needs are met, in addition to your immediate expenses like initial medical bills. This can include things like ongoing physical therapy, in-home care, hiring someone to help with chores at home, or making alterations to a home to accommodate a wheelchair. However, insurance companies might try to argue that those long-term care needs aren’t essential or that the severity of your injuries are being exaggerated.

You Have Experienced Medical Malpractice

Medical malpractice is a very complex area of law. Not only are the laws themselves complex, there are very specific standards for negligence that need to be met. Cases need to be made within a statute of limitations, evidence can be difficult to obtain and understand, and expert witnesses will likely be needed. Damages involved may also be less tangible types of damages, like pain and suffering. Medical malpractice can occur in many different ways, including surgical errors, misdiagnosis, medication errors, and lab mixups. Regardless of how your medical malpractice occurred, it’s important to contact a lawyer as soon as possible. 

A Company/Corporation is Involved

Sometimes, a person can be injured as the result of the actions of a business or by the actions of someone working on behalf of a company. This could include a dangerously defective product that injures consumers or a truck driver who gets into a crash while driving a route as directed by their employer. When businesses are involved, particularly if the business is a large corporation, they may have a legal team to protect their best interests. In the case of defective product cases, there may also be laws in place that help protect the business. Taking on a business can feel like a David vs. Goliath situation and a lawyer can help by going to bat to fight for your interests. 

Other Complicating Factors Exist

In some situations, a personal injury case can be complicated by certain factors not already mentioned here. For example, are there multiple parties who could potentially be liable for injuries? For instance, did a car accident involve more than two cars? Or in a truck accident case, legal liability hinges on what exactly caused the crash and there are several different parties who may potentially be held liable. 

Another complicating factor may be if a case involves a government entity in some way. This could include a car crash involving public transportation, a slip-and-fall in a government office building, or injuries caused by poorly maintained equipment on a public playground. Personal injury cases that involve government entities have very specific rules that need to be followed, so it’s important to have someone on your side who understands all the requirements that need to be met. 

Contact a Michigan Personal Injury Lawyer

If you’ve been injured in any type of accident and have any questions at all about your situation, it’s a good idea to contact a lawyer to get answers to your questions and learn more about your legal options. Those initial consultations are generally free. At Goodwin & Scieszka, we’re experienced in helping Michigan accident victims get the justice they deserve. Contact us today to find out how we can help.

Image: Pexels / Karolina Grabowska

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